The Wizards are on a two-game winning streak after a 114-96 win over the New York Knicks Tuesday night, and they’ve won five out of their last seven. All season long the Wizards have displayed their ability to score. Defensively, however, is where the Wizards have struggled.
As of late, the Wizards have accepted the challenge to defend, which is imperative if they have their eyes set on reaching the playoffs. Currently, the Wizards sit in 9th place in the Eastern Conference standings, just four games behind the Magic for the eighth seed.
On Thursday’sThe Brian Mitchell Show w/ Scott Linn on the Team 980/95.9 FM’s Tony Massenburg explains what clicked for the Wizards in Tuesday’s win.
“The question mark has always been, ‘Can they defend?, and they did a great job defending as well as shooting the ball,” Massenburg expressed. “This really is a team that has had to come out and play basketball the right way because their margin of error is not that great.”
Bradley Beal continues to exemplify All-Star caliber play, having scored 30 points or more in 12 straight games. Not only has he scored at a high level, as Scott points out, but he’s also done a phenomenal job getting his teammates involved. Massenburg breaks down how and why Beal’s game has expanded beyond just scoring.
“Let’s not be mistaken. His ability to shoot the basketball from deep is what set all those things up because when you’re a guy that can’t shoot the ball or you don’t command the attention from deep that Bradley Beal does, then you don’t have those options. You don’t have the drive option because people will play off of you and dare you to shoot.”
“From a shooting perspective he’s shown he’s one of the best in the league. He’s shown us that when the defense collapses on him he has the ability to pass the ball and find guys for open shots. And lastly, we see his approach at his leadership on a professional level. He leads his in other areas by the way he defends and encourages his teammates.”
Following the All-Star break, Bradley Beal believes the Wizards have a legitimate chance to pick up some wins as teams continue to lean on load management. Massenburg, “without a doubt”, deems that this is a
perfect opportunity to get steal some wins from teams resting players.